Week 42 (Mechanical conduits)

Progress is slowly starting to accelerate at the construction site.  Though we are not quite finished with the electrical conduit work, we have started to lay in the infrastructure for the mechanical layer, namely radiant heating and HVAC cooling.  The mechanical layer is the last layer we need to complete before we pour the slab.


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Week 41 (Rear Control Room wall details)

We’re getting down to the last nitty-gritty details before pouring the slab.  One of those details is the precise question of how we’re going to build the rear of the control room, which will incorporate a symmetric 4-step QRD built from RPG blocks.  We’ve had a general idea ever since Wes Lachot first drew that page of the plans more than a year ago, but now we need to know the exact answers, down to the sixteenth of an inch.  So we went to the field to see how our theories comported with reality…

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My first five minutes with James Taylor

James Taylor -- Covers James Taylor has been a blessing to me since hearing his records in high school more than 20 years ago.  While I did also listen to music that was louder (Jimi Hendrix) or bigger (Led Zepplin) or more highly produced (The Beatles), his voice, his guitar playing, and the lyrics he sang combined to create  for me a touchstone of musical purity and beauty that actually sustained me through some deep and dark noreastern winters.  So James, if you are reading this, thank you!

This year James Taylor is promoting Covers, a new album of old music he didn’t write.  And as he explains in the liner notes of his CD, that’s nothing new.  And there’s yet more “everything old is new again” as he talks about his recording process…

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Video Walkthrough

If you are like me, you probably cannot wait to see what Manifold Recording is going to look like. If you have two and a half minutes, you can get a glimpse by viewing my shiny new video walkthrough. Unfortunately WordPress does not tolerate very well the embedded object that plays the video, so rather than mess up the formatting of every entry that follows, please visit the Studio page of the website and roll your mouse over the image you find there.

The video will play in 1/2 size format and also 720p HD. It run 02:31 mm:ss and it’s very nice!

Week 40 (RPG sample panels and more block)


This past week saw another series of block deliveries, mostly odds-and-ends type blocks, such as this 6″ CBBB Polished 1 Face 1 Bottom block.  Another fourteen similarly unique pallets were delivered, and if you were wondering when the amount of extraordinary detail that defines every aspect of this project would begin to weigh on my psyche, it would be about now.  It’s like a jigsaw puzzle where you know what it’s supposed to look like in the end, but you cannot start putting it together until all the pieces are delivered, and there are so many pieces that it takes weeks and weeks and weeks for all of them to be delivered.

The good news is that the deliveries should be complete in the next few weeks, and if we every finish putting conduit into the foundation, we can pour the slab and actually begin real construction…

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In Defense of Piracy (Larry Lessig)

Larry Lessig is always writing great blog postings, and I have him in my blogroll so that his ideas are easy to access.  However, I’m blogging his essay In Defense Of Piracy specifically because it was picked up by the Wall Street Journal, meaning that perhaps some of the people who should be reading his work might have seen it.  I think he’s spot-on.

And I think his essay exemplifies, in a more contemporaneous way, the ideas I put forward as part of my Ars Electronica paper.

Go read both!

Week 39 (A mile of conduit)

I was kinda hoping to be able to report on one milestone (the pouring of the concrete slab), but I have a different one to report, based on news from our electrical contractor: we have now installed approximately one mile of conduit into what will be the slab.  There’s over 1000 feet of 4″ conduit for technical wiring, and another 4000+ feet of electrical conduit for power and lighting.  And now we’re getting ready to install the conduit for condenser lines.


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The Art of Possibility

Book: The Art of PossibilityA few years ago my wife Amy was encouraged on short notice to attend a lecture by Benjamin Zander; due to non-existent publicity for the event they needed seat fillers at UNC’s Memorial Hall.

Despite the limited audience (Zander writes that he is equally enthusiastic when speaking to five people as he is 1500), Zander’s message of enthusiastic optimism and positive tranformation had her calling me on my cell phone before she even got home.

I read the book from which the lecture was given shortly thereafter, and I, too was moved by its inspirational messages. Last night, as I prepared to listen to James Ehnes play the solo role in Pyotr Ilich Tchaikovsky’s always-dazzling Violin Concerto in D Major, op. 35 with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra at Roy Thompon Hall, I thought again about the many lessons of Zander’s work and how they are more relevant than ever.

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Jazzin the Piedmont?

Jazzin the Black ForestLast month at the Ars Electronica 2008 conference and festival, I had a chance to discuss with a number of very smart folks both my physical studio project, Manifold Recording, and my approach to creating a new recording environment/context, the Miraverse.  In the course of those discussions, a number of people mentioned Jazzin the Black Forest, a Book/DVD combination that documents the amazing history of the German MPS label.

The letters MPS stand for “Most Perfect Sound”, and as John Kelman writes…

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Week 38 (Lighting conduits)

With the technical wiring conduits (analog and digital) deep underground and the balanced power conduits laid in 18″ above those, the electricians are now laying in the lighting conduits.

Lighting Conduits

These conduits all run to the back corner of Sound Lock 2 to be controlled by a custom Variac panel we are building.

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